Poetry and Airplanes, by Danish singer-songwriter Teitur, is a powerful reminder not to judge an album by its cover. I'll admit I was sucked in by the dark, ominous-looking artwork, reminiscent of both Mule Variations and Alice by Tom Waits. I thought I would be treated, at the very least, to a band trying their best to sound as weird and seedy as Waits.
Alas, that was not the case.
It quickly became evident after the first few notes of the album-opening "Sleeping with the Lights On" that the cover photo and the material didn't exactly go well together. Instead of Waitsian wonder, Poetry and Airplanes is composed of bittersweet love ballads that would easily find themselves at home on any soft-rock radio station.
That being said, there is nothing particularly wrong with Teitur. The music is arranged and played very nicely, he's got a good voice and delivers his lyrics with emotion.
Yet, despite everything Teitur has on his side, I can't get past how utterly safe Poetry and Airplanes sounds. Maybe it's due to my continuous spiral into the depths of art rock elitism but this release is far too conventional for me, but don't let my stupid musical exclusiveness stop you from enjoying an otherwise sound album.
I can't actually call Poetry and Airplanes bad, and if you're a fan of Ron Sexsmith you'll likely love it.